About the Book:
From the decks of the ill-fated Lusitania to the smoke-filled trenches of France, Ashleigh must choose between the forgiveness of her past, life in the present, and a Savior who can rescue her from them all.
When her fiancé leaves her eight months before their wedding, the unexpected blow ignites a battalion of insecurities stemming from her father’s intimate betrayal. Her worst fears are confirmed – who could ever love a soiled woman?
In an attempt to escape the shame and disappointment of her past, Ashleigh boards the ill-fated Lusitania to cross the war-torn waters of Europe. Much to her dismay, she isn’t traveling alone.
Sam Miller is always making up for his best friend’s mistakes. Determined to help Ashleigh, he offers his compassion and protection as she ventures across a perilous sea. With the faint hope of renewing his lost love for Ashleigh’s sister, Sam never expects to find the woman of his dreams in his best friend’s former fiancé and his own childhood companion.
As they travel across the Atlantic, neither is prepared for the life-altering and heart-breaking journey of their friendship.
When the truth of Ashleigh’s past explodes in the middle of war and Sam rejects her, Ashleigh must decide if God is enough – or if the double weight of her betrayal and past will crush her life forever.
From the spectacular cover art to the opening prologue to the final page...Pepper Basham has become a debut author to watch. Her first novel is fresh, creative and poignant--a sure delight to fans of period fiction.
Now, I'm NOT a huge fan of historical or period novels. My ideal genre is modern suspense and mystery. When I have the opportunity to read a historical novel, I read with a critical eye and a rather large amount of trepidation.
In other words, it takes a powerful period story to grab and hold my attention. Which is why I'm thrilled to tell you about Pepper's novel. Her plot is a fresh take on World War II, focusing on the destruction of the Lusitania.
Pepper knows the proper balance between description and detail versus action and dialogue. The pacing keeps the story moving in a nice rhythm. And also important: the dialogue is suitable for the time period of the novel.
And for a period tale, her prologue is powerful and unique as well. Tragedy stole Ashleigh's innocence and has left her feeling like damaged goods. As the story unfolds we see her take more emotional blows that would topple any woman.
Enter Sam Miller. He isn't movie star handsome, wealthy beyond means or a player. He's a gentle man with a deep affection for Ashleigh as a little sister. Watching the relationship between Sam and Ashleigh develop made me want to tell women everywhere one thing:
THIS IS THE KIND OF MAN YOU WANT TO SPEND THE REST OF YOUR LIFE WITH!!!
Wow, that felt good! Pepper has made a huge mark in the faith fiction marketplace, and I'm eager for more stories. "The Thorn Bearer" is the first in a series, and I have discovered that she plans on tackling another genre in the near future.
So, my thanks to my friend Casey Herringshaw for my advance copy of "The Thorn Bearer" in exchange for an honest review. Honestly, I loved the book so much I bought a copy! Highly Recommended.
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